WINDPOWER is coming to the Southeast in June. But wind power, of course, is already there.
The wind industry’s strong manufacturing presence in the Southeast, currently under the threat of an expiration of the federal wind energy Production Tax Credit (PTC), will be highly evident June 3-6, when the WINDPOWER 2012 Conference & Exhibition takes place in Atlanta, Ga. That same strong regional presence is apparent in the latest segment of WindTV, the American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) vehicle to highlight how wind works for America. The segment focuses on the link between the U.S. wind industry’s premier annual event and the region in which it will be located this year.
The link, in fact, is strong. With the Southeast now one of the nation’s manufacturing centers, the wind power industry has tapped the region’s production muscle. Today over 90 plants in the Southeast serve the wind power industry. Meanwhile, technological innovation has made regions like the Southeast that were previously assumed to be not viable for wind power development to now be attractive.
“I think it’s great,” Ken Cole says in the video segment concerning WINDPOWER in Atlanta. Cole, a wind manufacturing technician at ZF Wind Power in Gainesville, Ga., seems well aware of how the industry’s manufacturing presence in the region is not necessarily known around the country. “Generally wind power is associated with the western part of the United States,” he says. “So to have something come here to the Atlanta area is outstanding. I’d say it shows that there’s a firm footing [for the industry] in this country, especially in this locale.”
Thus, WINDPOWER provides the opportunity to educate the country that the industry is providing jobs in every region of America, including the Southeast. Wind energy now employs 75,000 people in the U.S.
The growing manufacturing supply chain in the Southeast and across the nation, however, is in jeopardy. The PTC, wind power’s primary policy driver, is set to expire at the end of the year, and already the supply chain is feeling the effects of the uncertainty. A recent study found that extending the PTC will allow the industry to grow to 100,000 jobs in just four years, while an expiration will kill 37,000 jobs.
“Wind power is not only about producing affordable, homegrown energy, it’s about Made-in-the-USA manufacturing jobs,” said AWEA CEO Denise Bode. “We are delivering that message in Washington, D.C., to ensure that Congress takes action as soon as possible to extend the Production Tax Credit. That message also has resounded across our country, particularly in the Southeast, a hub of the American manufacturing renaissance. We’re proud to be a key part of that renaissance, and we’re excited to bring WINDPOWER 2012 to Atlanta. I urge Congress to take notice of our job-generating industry and pass the PTC now.”
WindTV is a showcase of video profiles of Americans whose lives have been positively impacted by the wind energy industry. The site, located at www.awea.org/windtv, features a different video profile each week.
A House bill seeking to extend the PTC has 90 cosponsors, including 20 Republicans, while a Senate bill to extend it was introduced March 15 by seven Senators, including three Republicans. PTC extension efforts have received the endorsement of a broad coalition of more than 370 members, including the National Association of Manufacturers, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the Edison Electric Institute, and the Western Governors’ Association. A PTC extension also has the support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Governors Association, and the bipartisan Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition, which includes 23 Republican and Democratic Governors from across the U.S. A PTC extension has been endorsed by a number of newspapers across the country, including the Houston Chronicle, The New York Times, the Denver Post, and the Daily Oklahoman.
AWEA Annual Market Report underscores need for PTC extension, April 13, 2012
Iowa city prospers, hopes for PTC extension, April 12, 2012
Denver Post editorial writer: PTC extension 'important to nation, Colorado,' April 11, 2012
From Nevada, Michigan, Montana: Calls for PTC extension, April 10, 2012
Sierra Club, BP agree: Extend the PTC, April 9, 2012
South Dakota newspaper joins others in endorsing PTC, April 6, 2012
National Governors Association: Extend the PTC, April 6, 2012
Sen. Bennet tours factories, pushing jobs and PTC extension, April 5, 2012
WindTV Holiday Special: Church lives mission with wind power, April 4, 2012
Montana county commissioners call for PTC extension, April 3, 2012
'Father of PTC' explains wind incentive's value, March 30, 2012
Citing 'all of above,' former FERC chair urges PTC extension, March 29, 2012
Manufacturers tell Senate panel: PTC extension urgently needed, March 28, 2012
WindTV: Colorado county gets big boost from wind power, March 26, 2012
Former Congressman Boucher sees PTC extension likely, March 26, 2012
WindTV: Wind power breathes new life into small Colorado town, March 21, 2012
Citing need for certainty, BP's Landis calls for PTC extension, March 20, 2012
In op-ed, Kansas Governor, Senator call for PTC extension, March 19, 2012
Bipartisan group of Senators introduces bill to extend PTC, March 16, 2012
Houston Chronicle editorial supports PTC extension, March 15, 2012
Southern Alliance head urges: Extend the PTC, March 14, 2012
WindTV: Missouri manufacturer grows with the wind, March 12, 2012
Oklahoma and America need wind technicians–and a PTC extension, March 8, 2012
WindTV: An American family, powered by a paycheck from wind, March 5, 2012
Salazar, citing 'race we cannot cede', backs extending PTC, March 1, 2012
Kerry, Brown win praise for bipartisan support of PTC extension, February 29, 2012
Wichita Eagle editorial blog endorses PTC extension, February 28, 2012
Daily Oklahoman: PTC extension “makes sense,” February 27, 2012
Bipartisan group of Illinois Representatives supports PTC extension, February 24, 2012
Kansas City Star backs PTC extension, praises Brownback, Moran, February 23, 2012
Bennet visits composites factory, urges PTC extension, February 23, 2012
Moran visits Siemens factory, pushes PTC extension, February 22, 2012
WindTV: PTC key to wind power manufacturing jobs, February 21, 2012
Topeka Capital-Journal: Extend the PTC, February 21, 2012
U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-IA): PTC is jobs engine conservatives should support, February 17, 2012
Bennet, Moran continue bipartisan push to extend PTC, February 16, 2012
Major U.S. consumer brands like Nike on extending the PTC: Just Do It!, February 15, 2012
Oklahoma Gov. Fallin urges conferees: Extend the PTC, February 15, 2012
Michigan worker's plea: Extend PTC, help wind power create U.S. jobs, February 13, 2012
Bipartisan letter from entire Iowa Congressional delegation urges: Extend the PTC, February 10, 2012
Senate Energy Chairman Bingaman: Act now to save clean-energy jobs, February 9, 2012
Bipartisan letter from Colorado Congressional delegation urges: Extend the PTC, February 8, 2012
Republican governors push for PTC extension; Senators express support, February 2, 2012
U.S. Chamber of Commerce joins broad range of groups endorsing PTC extension, February 1, 2012
WindTV: Wind power drives commerce in small-town America, January 24, 2012
Denver Post endorses PTC extension 'sooner rather than later', January 18, 2012
WSJ op-ed: 'Want Growth? Try Stable Tax Policy', January 5, 2012
Red State Energy, Red State Jobs, November 29, 2011